Author Topic: Avoiding USB-IF Fees for OSHW Designs  (Read 15012 times)

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Offline NANDBlog

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Re: Avoiding USB-IF Fees for OSHW Designs
« Reply #25 on: May 06, 2015, 10:40:52 am »
Unless you designed your own hardware for it, I dont se the problem using the PID, VID of the silicon manufacturer. The chips came with a library, drivers the whole shebang which is USB certified. If you want your own VID, pay for it, but why really do you want it? I mean you have to support drivers, microsoft, everything else, otherwise it is a half measure.

You could do that if you just put a fixed-function USB chip on a board, like a serial converter or audio device. Doesn't work for anything custom.

Also, being able to tell devices apart is rather nice. Have you never lost track of which "generic USB serial device" connected to your computer is which?

You could do that if you just put a fixed-function USB chip on a board, like a serial converter or audio device. Doesn't work for anything custom.

Also, being able to tell devices apart is rather nice. Have you never lost track of which "generic USB serial device" connected to your computer is which?
You can rewrite the product, manufacturer and serial number string without any restriction AFAIK, and your driver can rely on those. Of course if you are making some non standard interface this doesnt work, but there always seemed to be a workaround for this.
 

Offline donotdespisethesnake

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Re: Avoiding USB-IF Fees for OSHW Designs
« Reply #26 on: May 06, 2015, 05:49:15 pm »
USB-IF have shown themselves to be a bunch of dicks so you just need to ignore them. 
Nobody gives a  toss about having a USB logo - that is the only thing USB-IF actually own. If you don't use this there is nothing the USB Police can do about it
As long as you pick/guess/find/buy a PID/VID that isn't included in standard builds of Windoze/Mac/Linux then it just won't be a problem.

There are VID/PIDs available for OSHW projects, and for commercial products you can still buy them from someone who bought before they changed their terms.
Way way too much time has been wasted by people discussing this. It is a solved problem. Just get on and make stuff.

In reality, it is not even half-solved. If you want to create a legitimate commercial product, e.g. like Arduno, you need to go through USB-IF. The only alternative is if you restrict the class supported to one supported by off the shelf FTDI (etc) chips.
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Offline mikeselectricstuff

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Re: Avoiding USB-IF Fees for OSHW Designs
« Reply #27 on: May 06, 2015, 05:59:40 pm »
USB-IF have shown themselves to be a bunch of dicks so you just need to ignore them. 
Nobody gives a  toss about having a USB logo - that is the only thing USB-IF actually own. If you don't use this there is nothing the USB Police can do about it
As long as you pick/guess/find/buy a PID/VID that isn't included in standard builds of Windoze/Mac/Linux then it just won't be a problem.

There are VID/PIDs available for OSHW projects, and for commercial products you can still buy them from someone who bought before they changed their terms.
Way way too much time has been wasted by people discussing this. It is a solved problem. Just get on and make stuff.

In reality, it is not even half-solved. If you want to create a legitimate commercial product, e.g. like Arduno, you need to go through USB-IF. The only alternative is if you restrict the class supported to one supported by off the shelf FTDI (etc) chips.
Define "legitimate".
You can legally make and sell a USB device using a VID/PID bought from MCS, or made up, or lifted from a long-dead product.
You do NOT need to involve the USB cartel unless you want to use the USB logo. nobody will not buy a product due to not having the logo.
Like I said, for all practical purposes it's a solved problem.
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Online Jeroen3

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Re: Avoiding USB-IF Fees for OSHW Designs
« Reply #28 on: May 06, 2015, 08:22:15 pm »
Literally form the USB website:
Quote
Compliance means products that are called USB products are really built to match the description in the USB specification. This is important to a customer because if all products match the spec perfectly they would by definition work together perfectly. The world is not perfect and so compliance testing exists to help manufacturers measure how well their products match the specification. There are many ways to make sure products work together and many ways to see if they match the specification, but compliance testing is one of the most useful. Conscientious manufacturers do a great deal of testing on their own and use compliance test programs like the one sponsored by our organization, USB-IF. If you don't find a product on our product list it does not mean there is anything wrong with that product, but if you do find it there you know that this manufacturer has put in a lot of effort to try to make sure that product matches the USB specification and has the best chance of working properly in a variety of applications
I'm not aware of any import restrictions, or legal cases based on non-official USB-IF Logo carrying products. Please share if you you know any.
 

Offline f4eru

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« Last Edit: May 06, 2015, 09:41:26 pm by f4eru »
 

Offline coflynn

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Re: Avoiding USB-IF Fees for OSHW Designs
« Reply #30 on: May 12, 2015, 07:56:22 pm »
Quote
On a more positive note, has anyone seen https://hackaday.io/project/4994-bsu-bs-free-usb/discussion-24086? Looks like a workable attempt to ease the use of USB

I'm hoping that will happen... not sure if I'll have time to finish this realistically! But the idea is to play ball with USB-IF, in that I'm explicitly *not* sub-licensing the PID (i.e. you cannot get your own PID from me, nor can you compile the code and re-use my PID). It's a product being sold (a pre-programmed microcontroller with fixed function), although it's sold in a manner that is more flexible than a regular product.

I'm trying to write a sufficiently flexible API to implement most functions you might need. But if you need something beyond what is implemented, having the source code gives you an easier path (i.e. compile source, use your own VID/PID then) to make a commercial product.

It's not a ton different from existing solutions (FTDI, bus-pirate, etc) but am trying to make it cheaper, along with having an easier path from prototype-->production. From what I've seen a lot of products/designs choose a part early on in prototyping, and if you need more functionality it can be very difficult to swap, since it's both the hardware and API that changes. If you can keep the API relatively constant, changing the hardware isn't such a big deal.

But this is 99% proof-of-concept code right now compared to anything useful, so don't hold your breath as at this point it might not go much further unfortunately! Wish I had more time in each day...
 

Offline funkathustra

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Re: Avoiding USB-IF Fees for OSHW Designs
« Reply #31 on: July 22, 2015, 02:33:17 am »
This thread is ridiculous. If you want a USB PID/VID, call up your chip manufacturer and get one -- it's that simple. All of the MCU manufacturers I've ever designed USB products around (Microchip, NXP, Freescale, Silicon Labs) have given me a PID for free if I've asked or filled out their online form. If they ask about product volume, it's because they want to make sure you're making less than 10k units (or whatever their internal policy says is the limit).

If you're making more than 10k units, you should pony up the cash for a VID. The money the USB-IF makes from VID sales goes to organizing the developer committees, which helps keep USB development moving along as an open standard that anyone can access -- it's a good cause to support.

As for driver signing on Windows, it's really not that big of a deal. As long as you're using an existing kernel driver (like WinUSB, HID, or one of the USB class drivers), you don't need to do any driver development, and you don't need a trusted code certificate. Microsoft does, however, require that you sign your driver INF package -- code signing certificates can be purchased for around $40 from StartSSL, so it's not much of a financial burden. Please save your breath when complaining about driver signing. It keeps a lot of nasty shit off a lot of stupid people's computers.

And during testing, just self-sign your drivers by creating a key pair, import it into your trusted root certificates, and then sign your code with it. It takes 20 seconds to do. Stop bitching about it.
« Last Edit: July 22, 2015, 02:47:33 am by funkathustra »
 

Offline Pajeh

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Re: Avoiding USB-IF Fees for OSHW Designs
« Reply #32 on: July 22, 2015, 05:54:02 am »
If you want a USB PID/VID, call up your chip manufacturer and get one -- it's that simple. All of the MCU manufacturers I've ever designed USB products around (Microchip, NXP, Freescale, Silicon Labs) have given me a PID for free if I've asked or filled out their online form. If they ask about product volume, it's because they want to make sure you're making less than 10k units (or whatever their internal policy says is the limit).
+1

easy game, partly they send you the data in automated messages. Some take 2 days to review and send it.
 

Offline charlespax

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Re: Avoiding USB-IF Fees for OSHW Designs
« Reply #33 on: July 28, 2015, 07:52:09 pm »
The problem is now solved. You can get a USB ID from http://pid.codes.
 

Offline donotdespisethesnake

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Re: Avoiding USB-IF Fees for OSHW Designs
« Reply #34 on: August 29, 2015, 09:51:00 am »
People like StartSSL might be cheap, but getting a cert is not necessarily a slam dunk for small developers. https://danconnor.com/post/50f65364a0fd5fd1f7000001/avoid_startcom_startssl_like_the_plague_

The fact is, to be useful they can't give certs out to anyone. So it is quite likely that if you don't fit their quick model of what a certified user looks like, you will get a lot of hassle and maybe no cert. However, for $60 and a few easily faked documents, I don't think that is going to stop serious cyber criminals. Identity theft is so easy, it's hardly a barrier.

Clearly, if you are conventional brick and mortar incorporated company with a decent budget, getting a cert is another bureaucratic hurdle, like USBIF, UL, FCC etc, but is just another thing to be done. For OSHW designers without the backing of all that, it remains a hassle.
Bob
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Online blueskull

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Re: Avoiding USB-IF Fees for OSHW Designs
« Reply #35 on: October 01, 2015, 11:59:39 am »
Use any random number is okay, buying a number from vusb is better.

If they warn you that they will sue you, reply these words: "screw you" and tell them their daddy told you to tell them these words.
 


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